After reading Anna Karenina ( 5 /5 stars ) a few years ago , the time when I was still looking for a job; plus this recent A Confession ( 4 /5 stars ), and being borne upon the fact that Leo Tolstoy is considered by prominent literary lovers from different aspects of society as the unparalleled best novelist in the world , I promised myself that I would read all his books at my disposal , more even so that we can have now an access to any classics in the internet. Since I cannot splurge on his other books yet , that I want to collect in my own library someday, I would begin with his short stories as one of my friends on Goodreads put it and thus I would call this mission from now on : “ Tolstoy Marathon”.
Tolstoy Marathon # 1 The Emperor’s Three Questions or simply known as The Three Questions
An emperor philosophically existentialistic would give a great reward to whoever could best answer his three a la riddle questions :
First: What is the best time to do each thing?
Second: What is the most important people to work with?
Third: What is the most important to do at all time?
Unsatisfied with the answers of the persons who had at once made way to the palace , the emperor turned to a hermit living in a far forest. As the emperor only saw the small forest of the forest, he ended up realizing the answers based on his experience with the said hermit and a persecutor.
The emperor learned that :It is important to live at the present time, with whom the people you are , and how to make them happy.
Somehow enlightened, the Emperor promised that he would apply the insight by heart. As he wanted to have a second opinion, it occurred to him that there was one person known throughout his kingdom he had not turned to yet: the bookworm , living in a house filled with books to the rafter somewhere in Timbuktu.
Reaching the book lover’s dwelling place, the emperor found him sitting on a sofa, burying himself in a voluminous book and around him was the musty stacks of books he had to keep up with.
“ It must be a novel by James Joyce “, thought the emperor.
When the bookworm saw the emperor, he nodded his head in greeting and continued to immerse himself in the book.
The emperor approached him and said, “ I have come here to ask your second opinion with three questions:
When is the best time to do each thing?
Who are the most important people to work with?
What is the most important thing to do at all times?”
Hearing these, the bookworm put down the book; his eyes popped out, sparkled with interest in the questions. He looked as though he had not gone to bed yet, for he had been reading the whole night.
“ Your Majesty, just read and read and read.”
Blushed by the answer, “ How about the most important people to work with? “
“ Your Majesty, make friends with the other bookworms and be part of their book clubs.”
Noticing the bookworm unmoved from his crossed- sitting position ,and his eyes backed to the book, for he was used to being paid homage.
” Seriously, what is the most important thing to do at all times?”
“Share your ideas you have learned from the books with the people .”
Weird he looked for the Emperor and stifled an air of disappointment, off he went leaving the bookworm with his business.
Rating: 4/5 stars